Published November 14, 2019
A story in EE Times on innovations in micro- and macro-cooling describes a technology under development in the lab of Qiaoqiang Gan, associate professor of electrical engineering.
The system consists of a special material — an inexpensive polymer/aluminum film — that’s installed inside a box at the bottom of a specially designed solar “shelter.” The film helps to keep its surroundings cool by absorbing heat from the air inside the box and transmitting that energy through the Earth’s atmosphere into outer space.
“The polymer stays cool as it dissipates heat through thermal radiation, and can then cool down the environment,” says co-first author Lyu Zhou, a PhD candidate in electrical engineering. “This is called radiative or passive cooling, and it’s very interesting because it does not consume electricity — it won’t need a battery or other electricity source to realize cooling.”